As September gets closer and closer it’s time for kids to start getting ready to go back to school. While parents shop for new clothes and supplies and plan their sans-kids activities, The staff at School District 91 (SD91) is also busy at work preparing for the new school year.
SD91 Assistant Superintendent Mike Skinner spoke to Lakes District News and said that the district, which covers the Nechako Lakes, is still working to fill out staff across the school board. “We are working on our staffing and will have new teachers in several of our schools. The district currently has several unfilled positions, especially in our full-time teacher on call positions in Burns Lake and Vanderhoof,” said Skinner. “District staff is working on filling these and other positions and this will continue into the fall. We will have all classrooms covered for the start of school but expect to be tight on certified substitute teachers this fall.”
According to Skinner, problems filling out staff positions aren’t exclusive to Burns Lake. “Teacher hiring has been very competitive in B.C. and many rural and northern districts are finding it harder to hire teachers as the positions are available in almost all regions of the province. The district will have a few Letter of Permission [a special permit that allows someone to teach without a certificate in a particular school district] teachers employed again this year to help fulfill our staffing needs.”
Skinner did say however, that SD91 filled all its learner services department positions, including a District School Psychologist, Behaviour Intervention Specialist, and another district counsellor.
One major new staff change for the upcoming year is taking place in William Konkin Elementary (WKE), where a new principal has been announced as per an SD91 announcement in June. Karie Evans will be taking over the position for previous principal Natasha Toth. Evans is moving over from the Lack Klan School in Kitkatla, B.C. where she was vice principal, and before that she taught in Calgary, Fort McMurray as well as overseas.
In the SD91 press release, Evans said that she is excited to join the WKE and is looking forward to meeting and working with students, teachers, staff and families.